The National Alliance, the group that long dominated the American neo-Nazi scene but has shriveled since the 2002 death of its founder, is close to receiving a Canadian bequest that may be worth as much as $1 million, reliable sources say.

The money comes from the estate of Robert Harry McCorkell, a longtime Canadian member of the Alliance and chemist who reportedly spent time at MIT and the Smithsonian Institution before dying at age 67 in St. John, New Brunswick, in 2004. The estate includes, among other assets, a collection of ancient Greek and Roman coins, at least some of them gold, that McCorkell collected over the years and that was once displayed at the University of Saskatchewan Museum of Antiquities.

The news that the West Virginia-based Alliance could soon receive a huge infusion of Canadian funds set off a storm among human rights activists, several of whom suggested it might be possible to use Canadian law to halt the transfer.

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